Tis the Season for Bling!

C3a6c7844469c0658b85d71301e58611Andrea here. Due to the frenzy of the holidays and various demands, I am invoking the Wenchly “Repost” Rule, where we occasionally share an oldie-but-goodie. Given that the holiday season is a time of glittering baubles and bright, festive colors, I thought I would re-share a post on Men in Uniform.

The original blog was inspired by the setting of MURDER AT THE SERPENTINE BRIDGE, Book 6 of my Wrexford & Sloane mystery—the famous Peace Celebrations which were held in London during June of 1814. I was struck by the pomp and splendor of the famous guests—especially the victorious military brass—who came from all over the Continent to celebrate the defeat of Napoleon (this is, the first defeat!) and his exile to the isle of Elba. War is ugly and brutal, leaving a trail of death, desolation and destruction in its wake. So it’s a terrible irony that the painted portraits of the military involved in the interminable Napoleonic Wars have a certain heroic splendor (not to speak of a penchant for over-the-top bling!)

What is it about about uniform festooned with a king’s ransom of gold braid and gaudy baubles that draws a fluttery sigh from the ladies? I confess, during the course of my research, I found myself pausing to admire the, er, eye candy. So, putting aside moral scruples to honor the superb artistry of the Regency painters, I thought I would share some of my favorite examples of Men in Uniform. (The Allied officers play some small cameo roles in my story!) Enjoy the view!

Horatio Nelson

Sir Sidney Smith

Joachim Murat
Auguste de Marmont

Napoleon
Louis-Nicolas d'Avout

Alexander I

Jean-de-Dieu Soult
Sir_John_Moore_by_Sir_Thomas_Lawrence
From top to bottom: Charles Stewart; Horatio Nelson; Sir Sidney Smith; Joachim Murat; Auguste de Marmot; Napoleon; Louis-Nicolas d’Avout; Tsar Alexander I; Jean-de-Dieu Soult; Sir John Moore. (all images courtesy of Wikicommons )

So what about you? Does a man in uniform draw a fluttery sigh? (And even if Santa isn’t putting a hunky military hero under the tree, best wishes to all our Wenchly readers for a happy holiday season filled with good cheer—and good books!)

8 thoughts on “Tis the Season for Bling!”

  1. I enjoyed revisiting this very shiny post, Andrea! Thank you for the good wishes. I send wishes for happy holidays to all who see this.

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  2. My first thought was that Charles Stewart looks ridiculously young, but then I remember that soldiers generally are ridiculously young. And Murat looks gloriously arrogant. Dear me—I seem to be overusing adverbs. Apologies. But thanks for the glamor and glory.

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  3. I can see it now, some of those men would be in the running for People Magazine’s “Sexiest Man” cover. Power is an attractive trait. I think that is because they are confident in their abilities. I remember Eisenhower in newsreels. Lots of generals around him, but his calmness made it apparent he was the guy in charge.

    Merry Christmas to all, and to all, if you so choose, may you find your own sexiest man under your tree, or in your tree, or maybe in the corner behind the tree….whatever.

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  4. There is something about a man in uniform. . . I attended the Lord Mayor’s Parade in London back in 2000. Those uniforms! Good thing it was raining because I was drooling.

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  5. A very happy Christmas to all the Wenches and to everyone who takes part in the discussions. I hope it’s a wonderful time for all!!

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  6. To all the Word Wenches, a most happy holiday season enjoying your own personal power, with a man or without.

    Blessings to all women and men in uniform serving their country, more so in peacetime than wartime.

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  7. What a gorgeous selection of pomp and glorious uniforms adorning proud warriors, well, at least in their portraits. All those sashes, gold braid and flowing locks make a selection to brighten a girl’s evening, especially a Regency era fan.

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